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Old 23-07-2014, 00:47   #1
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Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Hi All

I purchased an incredibly well maintained 7 years old Bavaria 37 Cruiser sailing yacht after some 7 years of motor cruising early this year. I am delighted with the boat however not with Bavaria customer service.

3 weeks ago I happened to be on business close to the Bavaria factory and planned to buy some small parts that the dealer does not carry, ceiling blind hooks. From my arrival at the reception desk where I was treated as a hindrance rather than as an existing customer and a potential new customer as I trade my boats every 18 months to finally getting to speak to somebody in customer service and boy, was that an effort as the receptionist really did not want me to do this! Finally the man from Customer Service speaking by telephone from the next floor up again as he really did not want to waste any time speaking to me face to face advised me yet again to get these parts from the local dealer! I explained that they were not kept and what was the problem since I was here anyway?

Cutting a long story short I have had American boats in the past and customer service was awsum. Bavaria boats in the rather tight financial climate of today adopted an attitude that I find unbelievable and have certainly turned me off investing $250K plus on a new boat from them in the future.

Comments welcomed
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Old 23-07-2014, 00:55   #2
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Did you CC your post to Bavaria. No doubt its not the bosses of the company that want that to be your experience. They would be wanting you to have a positive experience. As a very small business owner, I would want to know if my staff were treating my customers like that.
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:06   #3
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

I think you should bear in mind what Bavaria is, it is a volume producer of boats. If you turned up at head office Toyota asking for personal service and a set of spark plugs, you might get the same result!
I know what you mean about US boat producers, the good ones (my boats were Sabre, then Little Harbor) provide excellent after sales service on an excellent product, Little Harbor continue to do so through Hinckley on a product that went out of production 20 years ago.
Your policy of "trading" your boats every 18 months sounds wise, make sure the new one has blind hooks!
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:10   #4
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

I did a Baja bash aboard a Bavaria. Everything inside got homogenized, but there was never a doubt about the boat.

I'm going to guess that the factory wants to concentrate on building boats, and let their sales organization handle parts and secondary purchasers. I know they've treated the primary owners pretty well.
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:14   #5
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

factories arent set up for retail sales .that would be the same situation as me going to the BMW factory to buy a rear-view mirror for a 7 year old model.did you get the parts you desired?
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:19   #6
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Thanks all for your replies. Tim, sailing is not similar to motoring we all pay top dollar for what is a luxury sport in the main and being a foreign visitor to the factory and asking for customer service I don't believe is too much of an issue. Whatever people may say about the USA customer service and their attitude to delight customers is still for me the only way to treat people if you want repeat business.
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:22   #7
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Sugar baby, all I wanted was for someone to tell me where I could obtain the items! If it was there and then terrific but being dismissed out of hand is rather infuriating! Also it was nice to see where my boat was produced! Now I am sad I wasted my time when I could have been enjoying a Bavarian sausage
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Old 23-07-2014, 01:36   #8
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Godber View Post
I think you should bear in mind what Bavaria is, it is a volume producer of boats. If you turned up at head office Toyota asking for personal service and a set of spark plugs, you might get the same result!
I know what you mean about US boat producers, the good ones (my boats were Sabre, then Little Harbor) provide excellent after sales service on an excellent product, Little Harbor continue to do so through Hinckley on a product that went out of production 20 years ago.
Your policy of "trading" your boats every 18 months sounds wise, make sure the new one has blind hooks!
USA suppliers arent so awesum. it took me 2 month wait to get a new{not rebuilt} power steering pump for a 390v8 in a 1964 ford T-bird and that was back in 1981. they must have searched their dealer shelves from coast-to-coast.it was not my primary vehicle but what surprised me was that the 390V8 was a popular motor.that 18 month period have something to do with VAT tax or you just like flipping boats for profit?seems to me its easier to stay with the same model boat once you learn her systems.unless of course its to profit by side-stepping the VAT tax. fairwinds and godspeed.
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Old 23-07-2014, 02:28   #9
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CelticGuy50 View Post
Sugar baby, all I wanted was for someone to tell me where I could obtain the items! If it was there and then terrific but being dismissed out of hand is rather infuriating! Also it was nice to see where my boat was produced! Now I am sad I wasted my time when I could have been enjoying a Bavarian sausage
someone maybe having a "bad hair day". i would think they would give you a factory tour and some free drinks later like a winery or bacardi rum factory does in PR.some of those little widgets and trim are frustrating to find easily.is your latest bavaria an ex-charter boat from croatia? just curious is all.later
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Old 23-07-2014, 06:36   #10
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CelticGuy50 View Post
sailing is not similar to motoring we all pay top dollar for what is a luxury sport in the main
But thats my point, Bavaria is at the high volume end of the spectrum, if you bought a Bentley? Bavaria make a very good product at a very good price, Royal Huismann will definitely greet their owners more effusively!
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Old 23-07-2014, 06:52   #11
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sugarbaby-dot-c View Post
factories arent set up for retail sales .that would be the same situation as me going to the BMW factory to buy a rear-view mirror for a 7 year old model.did you get the parts you desired?
The Beneteau factory in Marion, SC. has always been very responsive to parts requests.
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Old 23-07-2014, 07:59   #12
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Did you call ahead? Make any advance preparations? Doesn't sound like it. Had you done so, then probably you would have had a name of a person to ask for or a specific door or area to approach. While never in boat building, I was in manufacturing most of my life and for the most part you didn't get in any of our facilities without an appointment. This wasn't aimed at customers but aimed at all the salesmen showing up daily and aimed to protect our employees. Considerable danger of spouses, bf/gf or ex, or other domestic related persons showing up and creating issues, even opening fire once inside.

Most manufacturing facilities of larger companies are not set up for retail walk ups. With a call ahead, most could accommodate some how. I don't think this is country vs. country, but I do think size is a big factor. For instance, I think you could get into most small boat builders in the US but show up at a Sea Ray factory in Tennessee and you won't get beyond the vestibule.
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Old 23-07-2014, 09:18   #13
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Quote:
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Did you call ahead? Make any advance preparations? Doesn't sound like it. Had you done so, then probably you would have had a name of a person to ask for or a specific door or area to approach. While never in boat building, I was in manufacturing most of my life and for the most part you didn't get in any of our facilities without an appointment. This wasn't aimed at customers but aimed at all the salesmen showing up daily and aimed to protect our employees. Considerable danger of spouses, bf/gf or ex, or other domestic related persons showing up and creating issues, even opening fire once inside.

Most manufacturing facilities of larger companies are not set up for retail walk ups. With a call ahead, most could accommodate some how. I don't think this is country vs. country, but I do think size is a big factor. For instance, I think you could get into most small boat builders in the US but show up at a Sea Ray factory in Tennessee and you won't get beyond the vestibule.
Same way at f.e. Jeanneau.. some ten years ago we took a brandnew SO 37 in Rochelle for delivery to Baltic. The boat was ordered in Germany, but the dealer did a **** as we called him for some problems and Jeanneau said : call your dealer..
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Old 23-07-2014, 23:38   #14
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

In some respects dealer network referrals may be contractual - i.e. you be a network dealer, deal with the customers and we promise not to sell direct or undercut your sales.

CF is not the better business bureau. We don't have the other side of this story so in a way it's kind like sport b!tching.
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Old 24-07-2014, 00:18   #15
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Re: Bavaria Customer Service NOT!

Some people have a weird sense of entitlement.
Bavaria have a dealer network, use it and learn from your experience.
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